Marvel’s most recent superhero character is Arab-American, and Muslim! Amulet (Fadi Fadlalah) is a superhero, inspired by cultural trait, nazar, a symbol that supposedly “protects people from evil eye” and “other people’s harmful intentions” according to Sarah Al Fageeh and Saladin Ahmed, co-creator and author who both come from multicultural backgrounds.
And that's why the character's design refutes the stereotype associated with Arab men as unfriendly or violent as opposed to Amulet who’s round, big and friendly.
Growing up reading comic books, I always felt there was a lack of representation, nobody looked or sounded like us. This week I got introduced to the first Arab Marvel Character #Amulet by @saladinahmed and An amazing Silver Surfer written by fellow hip-hop head @RobMarkman 🚨🚨 pic.twitter.com/FtRI3toudA— BERNIE SANDUNES (@TheNarcicyst) March 5, 2020
Saladin Ahmed author and creator of Amulet; Is an Eisner Award winning American comic, science fiction and fantasy writer. Born in the US to parents of Lebanese, Egyptian, Irish and Polish descent.
Ahmed interprets Amulet’s powers not only as comic design but as an inspiration to real life energy that can conquer prejudice and racism that the US and the world suffer from.
Amulet's co-creator here. love to everyone responding to this with positivity, refusing to let racist trollery stand. You guys are great!— Saladin Ahmed (@saladinahmed) January 4, 2020
Ahmed, had told CNN he “basically learned to read from Marvel comics”, kept Amulet a bit of a mystery but mentioned he’d have “magical powers”
According to a Washington Post; In 2017 Ahmed got huge media attention after highlighting through a tweet, artwork used by a cereal company on their package; “why , literally, the only brown corn pop on the whole cereal box is the janitor? This is teaching kids racism.”
Later on, the company indicated they would change the artwork in the future.
Sara Alfageeh, Jordanian-American illustrator and Amulet’s co-creator; Stated on her personal website (sara-alfa.com): “She is passionate about history, teaching, girls with swords, and the spaces where art and identity intersect.”
5 years ago, Ms. Marvel came out and convinced me to become an illustrator. I could feel how deeply the creators CARED.— Sara Alfageeh (@SaraAlfageeh) March 5, 2020
I co-created Amulet-- an Arab Muslim American superhero kid debuting today in Ms. Marvel issue 13. I hope he helps aspiring creators out there to care too. 🧿 pic.twitter.com/GtvOBELZ4F
Inspired and motivated by the fabulous Marvel team and Ms Marvel (Kamala Khan), from Pakistani origins, and “the first Muslim character to headline her own comic book” , Sara went on to become an illustrator for the newest Marvel character, Amulet, debuting in Ms. Marvel issue 13. And she is hopefully anticipating that Amulet will inspire all creators out there just as Ms. Marvel inspired her.
Sara stresses: "This character is a gentle giant, so I wanted to make sure that even with his size, he was shaped like a friend."
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